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Menu Plan and Recipes

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cheese flan
Cheese Flan with Spinach
Salad

shrimp paprika
Shrimp in Paprika Sauce

pasta butter
Pasta with Browned Butter
Sauce

broccoli garlic chips
Broccoli with Garlic Chips

 

Menu Plan for the week of March 15, 2013: Friday's Recipes

Cheese Flans with Spinach Salad
Shrimp with Paprika Sauce
Pasta with Browned Butter
Broccoli with Garlic Chips

Cooking time:  40 minutes for menu          Cooking schedule: see below for instructions

   There is a bit of prep time with the flan; the rest of the dinner can be made while it bakes.  The pasta will cook while you have the starter, and the broccoli will be steamed on low heat at the same time.

Cheese Flans with Spinach Salad               Preparation and cooking time:  40 minutes
    Cheese and eggs can be combined in so many ways.... These are not as light as a soufflé but lighter than a frittata.

3 eggs
1/4 cup ricotta cheese
1 tbs whole grain mustard
2oz (60gr) cheese, chevre, Brie, Cheddar
1 slice Prosciutto
1/2 tsp dried basil
Salad
3oz (90gr) fresh spinach, mâche or other spring greens
1 tbs Dijon-style mustard
1 tbs white Balsamic vinegar
2 tbs good olive oil

Prepare ramekins: Butter and line the bottom with buttered wax or parchment paper (see techniques ). 
Flans: Slice or cut cheese to fit into ramekin. Place cheese in bottom of ramekins.   Roughly chop Prosciutto and arrange around edges of cheese. Whisk eggs, ricotta, mustard and basil together.  Spoon egg mixture into ramekins.
Bake: Put ramekins into a roasting pan with deep sides - I use a metal bread pan, and add hot water (hot tap water is fine) so that it comes half way up the sides of the ramekins.  Bake for 30 minutes at 400F (200C) - they should be set - firm on top and starting to brown.  Remove from oven and from hot water. 
Salad: Wash spinach if necessary, spin dry using a salad spinner, tear and put into a large salad bowl.  Whisk together vinegar and mustard.  Slowly add olive oil, whisking constantly until vinaigrette is thick and creamy.  Add spinach and toss well to coat - tongs work well. 
To finish: Arrange salad on 2 plates. Run a table knife around the sides of the flans to loosen (if necessary).  Put a small plate over top of ramekin and flip over.  Remove ramekin, and paper from top (formerly bottom) of timbale. Carefully turn back so top is up. Place flans next to salad and serve.

Shrimp with Paprika Sauce                                  Preparation and cooking time:   25 minutes 
     Olives, almonds and feta round out this spicy paprika sauce.  Serve with pasta or rice.

12oz (350gr) shrimp, cleaned
2 shallots
4 cloves garlic
2 slices Prosciutto or bacon
1 tbs tomato paste
1/3 cup (3oz, 90ml) white wine
3 tbs Greek or plain yogurt
1/3 cup green olives (12 - 15)
1/4 cup almonds
1/4 cup (2oz, 60gr) feta
1 tbs paprika
1 tbs olive oil

Clean shrimp if needed, if not just rinse and let drain. 
Peel and chop shallots. Mince garlic. Chop Prosciutto or bacon.  Cut olives in half or thirds. 
Heat oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add paprika and sauté briefly.  Add garlic, shallots, Prosciutto and sauté until golden, 5 - 7 minutes.  Add shrimp and sauté until they start to curl and turn opaque.  Add wine, tomato paste and stir well to combine.  Add olives, almonds and heat through.  Stir in yogurt, remove from heat, add feta, stir gently.  Serve.

Pasta with Browned Butter and Pepper           Preparation and cooking time: 30 minutes
   This was a staple in my family when I was a child. It's simple to make: brown the butter and add lots of black pepper.  Salt is optional.  It works well with just about everything, or all on it's own.

1 cup dried pasta  something bite-size
2 tbs butter
1/8th - 1/4 tsp black pepper   or more, but remember, it's hot
salt - optional

Cook pasta according to package directions, drain. 
Return pasta pan to medium heat.  Add butter and sauté until it turns golden brown, being careful not to let it turn too dark or it will taste burnt.  When brown add as much black pepper as you like, and salt if using.  The butter will foam.  Add the pasta and quickly stir with a spatula to coat and heat through.  Remove from pan and serve.

Broccoli with Garlic Chips                                        Preparation and cooking time: 25 minutes
    Fry the garlic until it is a lovely golden brown.  The little chips are very tasty; not at all sharp like raw garlic, but not creamy like roasted.  If you prefer less garlic, just use the flavored oil - and let someone else munch on the chips.

1/2 medium head of broccoli
2 tbs olive oil  
4 cloves garlic
a bit of sea salt if desired

Cut broccoli into small florets and stems.  Put in a steamer basket in a saucepan with an inch of water in bottom.  Put on medium heat and steam for 8 - 10 minutes or until just done.  Remove from pan and put into a serving dish.  Pour oil over the broccoli, sprinkle with garlic chips and serve.

For garlic chips: Slice peeled garlic as thinly as you can.  Put olive oil in a small frying pan and, over medium heat, fry garlic chips until brown and very crisp, - about 10 minutes.  Mind them so they don't burn.  Remove chips and drain on paper towels.  Keep oil warm until needed.

Cooking Schedule: 40 minutes for menu
Assemble all ingredients and utensils
Utensils: measuring cups, spoons, knives,
baking pan, ramekins, medium bowl, whisk, large
skillet, small skillet, saucepan with steamer basket
and lid, pot and colander for pasta, salad bowl

Turn oven on, 400F (200C)
Prepare ramekins
Slice cheese, lay in ramekin
Chop Prosciutto, lay around cheese
Whisk, eggs, ricotta, herbs, mustard
Spoon eggs into ramekins
Put ramekins in pan, add hot water, bake
Put water on high heat for pasta
Trim broccoli, put in steamer, set aside
Clean shrimp if needed
Chop shallots
Mince garlic for shrimp
Slice garlic for broccoli
Chop Prosciutto for shrimp
Prepare spinach or greens
Make vinaigrette for spinach in large bowl
Sauté garlic for chips
Sauté paprika for shrimp

Add shallots, garlic, Prosciutto to paprika, sauté
Cut olives
Add shrimp to shallots, sauté
Mind the garlic chips
Add wine, tomato paste to shrimp, stir well
Turn heat off under shrimp
Remove garlic chips from oil, and oil from heat
When flans are almost done:
Add spinach to vinaigrette, toss, arrange on plates
Remove ramekins
Remove flans, place next to salads
Start to cook pasta
Start to steam broccoli, medium - low heat
Serve starter....
Done?
Drain pasta, start to brown butter
Return shrimp to heat
Reheat garlic oil
Remove broccoli, add to oil to heat through
Add olives, almonds to shrimp
Add pepper, salt, pasta to browned butter
Finish broccoli, pasta
Remove shrimp from heat, stir in yogurt, feta
Serve